I have worked as a tour manager/guide for the past twelve years. Initially I worked part time alongside my work as a History and Languages teacher, but made it my full time occupation five years ago. I have worked in France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Morocco, India and the United Kingdom, but specialise in Italy, Spain, France and Greece. I speak fluent Spanish, French and Italian and am in the process of learning Greek as I have worked there for years, but to my shame have never learnt more than the basics.
I have lived and worked in Rome, Siena, Milan, Paris and I now live in Barcelona. In Italy I taught English to Italian politicians, worked as events manager and also a tour guide. In Paris I ran business English seminars alongside teaching English to a variety of French professionals. In Siena I attended the Università di Siena for a year as part of the Erasmus programme and I now set up operations for tours alongside freelancing as a tour guide/tour manager for one other tour company.
My thoughts on travelling
If curiosity killed the cat, I must be on at least my ninth life. I feel my curiosity about people and the world is actually of greater importance than my early experiences living in Milan and visiting grandparents who lived near Paris. Curiosity is the lifeblood of travel. However, what those early experiences did instil in me was the possibility of travel and it felt as natural to go to Paris as travel to see my other granny in the North of England. Early experiences living abroad are a bit like learning to ski as a child rather than as an adult. You don’t fear, you only see excitement.
Travelling is akin to falling in love. The mundane becomes exciting and all our senses are heightened. Buying a coffee, taking a walk and boarding a train is that much better simply because you are somewhere else. Smell the croissants in Paris, feel the sun on your face in Barcelona, taste the fabulous food in Italy, listen to the Tower of Babel that is Europe and sit and people watch in the piazzas. Trips should replicate that magical moment when you find a book that you simply can’t put down and never want to end. Most people are ‘exposed’ to the world via a media obsessed with relaying the very worst in human behaviour. Travel is an opportunity to see the very best.